Saturday, June 23, 2012


I usta consider people in holiness movements to be fallen prudes.  I'm becoming one.

 Matthew 5:48
Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.

I publicly confessed the following 3 sins Weds night.

!.  Gluttony
By the grace of God, His help, and Mr. P's advice, i have kept the calorie count down and continued to avoid late night eating.

2.  Sharp tongue
 Thoroughly lost it on this one.  try again.  It was during a gluttony attack. Didn't eat.

3.  Wanting to do my own thinng rather than be a good wife.
Amazingly easy to change this behavior.  I'd been out of the house for large chunks of time Thurs. offering  tracts as commodities were distributed, and then at the gym.  Mr. p felt deserted as I prepared to depart for coffee shop knitting, a highlight of my week.  I simply decided to stay home and keep him company.  easy, even fun

Have decided, with medical approval, to decrease some meds I take.  Wondering, was heartened to hear in 1 Cor 6:12
12 All things are lawful unto me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any.

I've been encouraged to enter a pair of baby knickers in the county fair.  In my fit this afternoon,  when I forgot to choose to rejoice, I flailed about with "I have an MS!  I should knit for the fair!  And they won't sell and I'll give them away to some undeserving poor!"

Was chastised to hear in 1 Cor 8:1
Now as touching things offered unto idols, we know that we all have knowledge. Knowledge puffeth up, but charity edifieth.

Yeah, I know the words didn't mean what they do now, but once upon a time my idol was my diploma and loving little ones feeds me.  Yeah, I'm sort of out of context, but am extending the meaning.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Mrs. P's Pithy Pronouncement

I was an apostate, worldly Christian, but was ordained a lay priest and went to Japan on a missionary visa to teach Biology and Algebra at a church related University.  The job was not as advertised and I lost my faith, having equated that denomination with God.  I did not understand sin so I did not understand the need for Salvation.

Investigating Buddhism and Hinduism, I found they simply did not feed me.

Years later, back in America, I experienced a very bad case of reverse culture shock and became mentally disorganized.  I could not hold a job and had many difficulties.  The Lord put me in a position where the only solution was to sincerely cry unto Him and marriage to Mr. P in a few days was the result.

When Mr. P kept asking if I were really saved, I kept saying yes, but finally said, "Oh, I'll do it again!"  I knelt in the living room and sincerely asked forgiveness and to receive Jesus as my Saviour and God..  I experienced a remembered but long forgotten witness within myself.  There is joy in Jesus!  Rejoicing in the presence of God!  I knew I was forgiven and back in the fold.   I had to tell people about Jesus!

I called a Jewish friend in Japan.  Lost a friend .I wrote letters to friends in Japan to whom I should have witnessed.  My enthusiastic Christianity was not well received. I had to tell people about Jesus!

Christians stopped me on the street and asked if they knew me.  I believe they sensed Holy Spirit in me. I asked clerks if they were going to heaven. and was amazed by how few knew it happens only through JESUS!

Since coming to the Salvation Army last year it's like I finally woke up.  I've surrendered more completely to Jesus and He has responded with great blessings, all spiritual, some physical, some mental.  I'm much healthier now than six months ago and somehow think I'll be healthier still.

I've come to a better understanding of what Jesus meant when He said, "Be ye perfect..."

Joining the Salvation Army is a lifelong commitment, a covenant.  Mr. P has considered it his whole life.  It's new to me. It's the right thing to do, but life is a long time (maybe).  I asked for direction and guidance two nights ago.Why would God have not somehow prepared me to think about joining  S.A. before now?  I wandered around the house and decided to organize the stack of boxes behind my chair in the living room, untouched for years. One box contained books, most of which I don't remember acquiring.  There was a small red softback, published in 1956, that I evidently had picked up at a rummage sale some time.  PREPARATION FOR SOLDIERSHIP. It's the outline of lessons for S.A. recruits,and it all sounds very familiar from our recruit classes!  SO, God had somehow attracted me to S. A. sometime.  It's a small but very interesting event.

In this little book, it's all about JESUS!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Sacking commodities...

Today at the Salvation Army was fun.  We had 4 teenagers who ran me ragged.  They were fun to watch as they devised ways to play while quickly doing their work.

As we gathered one young beauty was showing her bosom.  I walked behind and said, "Please forgive me. Don't hate me," and pulled up the shoulders of her top.  She gave me a hug when she left.

I had greeted them with "I'm 60.  How old are you?"  One young politician exclaimed, "No way are you 60!"  She made my day.

There sure wasn't much food.Cereal,raisins, corn, green beans, pistachios (!) pasta and some people got a bottle of cranapple juice.  There is but one distribution a month, to people who live on, for example $600 a month. Sure, there is subsidized housing and foodstamps.  Ok, by the world's standards, they are rich.

Jesus taught...

abstract concepts, like rejoicing, using concrete objects.

So, dear readers, can you think of a way to use concrete examples to teach rejoicing?  TY

Thursday, June 7, 2012

To Rejoice Is a Choice, Reprise

I'm shamelessly using notes from Dr. Adrian Rodgers' sermon .I chose to give this as a devotional for the Home League on June 4.  When my notes below were reviewed it was suggested that our particular ladies would enjoy a story. That turned out to be an excellent idea and here is the one I told.

Once upon a time there was a woman named Matti, which means strong woman.  You may have heard of her.
There was a little girl who had a little curl right in the middle of her forehead.
When she was good she was very good and when she was bad she was HORRID.

She often remembered the times she was horrid and stayed on her bed and thought about her horridness.  When she was 7 she saw a picture window of Jesus inviting the children to come to  him and decided to go to Jesus.  She became very happy when she thought of Him.  She grew up, but did not marry and have children as she had dreamed she would.

Other women did marry and have children but had other things that made them unhappy, though they had times when they were very happy when they thought about Jesus.  Some had unhappy marriages, sick children, disappointing jobs, but when they thought of Jesus they were very happy.

Matti had a few times when she cried mightily unto the Lord in prayer and her prayer was answered.  She said,   "God hit me over the head with a sledge hammer." and for awhile, she was happy.  Then she would remember her horridness.  She knew this was agaist the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Finally, one day, she found out that Paul had written in the Book of Phillipians that to Rejoice is a Choice.  It is possible to be always happy and Paul tells how.

To Rejoice is a Choice.  It's a radical idea, but Paul tells how in Phillipians 4.  (vv4,5)
Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice, Let your reasonableness be known to everyone, The Lord is at hand;

Matti finally GOT IT.  Jesus has promised "I will be with you always and never leave you." She didn't have to wait for God's hammer!  He is always here!  with her!

Find joy in Jesus, not in circumstances.  That is, it is not what is happening around us that makes us happy, but that Jesus is with us!

(v6) do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.

DON"T WORRY  Matti had heard that worry is an insult to God. It is the opposite of faith.  He gives us everything we need.  Instead of worrying Matti THANKED God and prayed and EVERYTHING, even the very little things.  She liked to say,"Attitude of Gratitude."  Thankful people are happy people.

(v7)And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard (keep) your  hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Matti got the peace that passes understanding.  Now she relaxes in the peace of God.  It's not the absence of problems, but the presence of God's power that gives us peace.

Keep thoughts and intents pure.

Paul wrote  Finally brothers (and sisters) whatever is true, whatever is honorable...just...pure...lovely...commendable,if there be any excellence, if there is anything worthy of  praise, think about these things.

Matti started turning her eyes away from magazines at the grocery store and thanking God for His perfect tomato instead.

In Phillipians 4 Paul told us to be happy and how to do it in 5 steps.

1.  Rejoice in the presence of God.

2.  Don't worry.  Pray about everything instead.

3.  Don't take things for granted, take things with gratitude.  Be thankful.

4  Relax in the peace of God.

5  Think about beautiful good things.

After this,  I gave everyone else in the room an opportunity to speak and my superior explained very well that while we can't always be happy because of bad circumstances, we can always rejoice.

The next day, at the laundromat, I ran into one of the home league ladies who said, in effect, wasn't it too bad that my superior was unhappy.  I tried explaining it again...I think that to work in this setting I need some training in Special Ed. The home league lady finally asked "What does "rejoice" mean, anyway?"

Maybe we're all still figuring out 'rejoice", but Matti does it a lot these days.  Please God you too.